Your Next PC or Laptop Purchase

Has the time come to buy a new PC or laptop?

"What should I look for when buying a new PC or laptop?"

I get asked this question quite often. My reply is usually in the form of an email or text message. Time to bring all those email and text messages together here in one article.


First thing to consider is, "are you making a purchase for business or personal use?"

: you will want to spend more on a PC or laptop that offers high quality and reliability. Businesses should replace their devices after 5 years of use. This will minimise the possibility of hardware and system failure. If available, a three year (or more) warranty on devices is a good option. A business grade PC or laptop will come with Windows 10 or 11 Professional.


Some examples of business grade computers:

  • Acer Veriton PC
  • Dell Optiplex PC
  • Dell Vostro laptop
  • Lenovo ThinkCentre PC
  • Lenovo ThinkPad laptop
  • Toshiba Tecra laptop


Personal: If you purchase a laptop or PC for under $1,000.00 consider these devices as disposable. Once the warranty expires and something goes wrong with the device simply replace it with a new one. In most cases these devices are not economically worth repairing.

However, if you purchase an expensive device it will be worth servicing if something goes wrong outside of it's warranty period. Most PCs and laptops for home use come with Windows 10 or 11 Home Edition.


Some examples of personal computers:

  • Acer Aspire laptop or desktop PC
  • Dell Inspiron laptop or desktop PC
  • HP Pavilion laptop
  • HP Slim desktop PC

When you are out shopping for a PC or laptop consider the following:

 Things to avoid:

  • Intel Celeron CPU      (Learn more...)
       Under powered, waste of time.
  • Intel Pentium CPU     (Learn more...)
       Under powered, waste of time.
  • Mechanical hard drive (hdd) as your primary system drive
       Mechanical hard drives are becoming obsolete while solid state hard drives (ssd) provide better performance and continue to drop in price. Windows 10/11 and your installed programs will start up and run much faster with a solid state hard drive.
  • Screen resolution: some cheap laptops will come with a maximum screen resolution of 1360x768, these are to be avoided.


Things to look for:

  • Solid state hard drive either in the form of type SATA or M.2
       As well as providing better overall performance and their compact size, M.2 ssd drives are becoming a popular storage option in both PCs and laptops.
  • For most users 512GB of ssd storage will be sufficient.
       If you require extra storage (say 2TB or more) you can add a second mechanical hdd as they are less expensive than a equivalent size ssd .
  • Most budget systems come with 4GB of RAM.
       This is really the minimum amount needed to run Windows 10/11. Look for 8GB of RAM or more (more the merrier!).
  • A dedicated video device such as a AMD or Nvidia graphics card.
    This is a good option but not necessary. The Intel Core iX series of CPUs comes with integrated video graphics that will work fine for most users. Exceptions are gamers, advanced video editing, computer aided design (CAD).
  • Screen resolution of 1920x1080 or better.
  • Backlit keyboard for laptop.



Expensive vs Cheap and Cheerful

"Do I buy an expensive device or one with a cheap price tag?"


In the end this is really a personal choice. There are valid arguments on both sides.


Expensive device: will provide reliable long term use. You can expect good performance, quality build and features, warranty and support.

Cheap device: If you are a casual user and not concerned too much about long term reliability, you could purchase two or perhaps even three cheap PCs or laptops by the time you cover the cost of one expensive model.

When it comes to bargain hunting keep in mind the above topic "Things to Avoid". You could save yourself a lot of disappointment.


This should be enough information to help you out on your next PC or laptop purchase. I will update this article as more information becomes available. Happy shopping!